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Pizza delivery driver kills robber who attacked him in St. Louis

Pizza delivery driver kills robber who attacked him in St. Louis

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ST. LOUIS • A pizza delivery man shot and killed a robber who attacked him late Thursday in south St. Louis, police say.

The dead man was identified as Lavon Courtney Jr., 17, of the 5300 block of Grant Street. He was shot about 10:20 p.m. Thursday in the 4600 block of South Spring Avenue.

Police Officer Michelle Woodling said police believed the shooting was justified. Therefore, the death of the robber does not count toward the city’s total homicides.

The city stands at 191 homicides for the year, Woodling said. The totals exclude homicides ruled justified, such as cases of self-defense, and fatal police shootings.

Police say the pizza deliverer is a man, 41, who was trying to deliver food on Spring when he was robbed by two men. One of the robbers struck the delivery man in the head with a firearm.

The victim tried to run back to his car, and the robber fired shots at him. The delivery man wasn’t hit.

The delivery man had his own handgun, police say, and he fired shots at the robber. He then drove back to the pizza shop and called police.

The delivery man’s only injury was a cut to his head after being struck with the robber’s handgun.

Police say they found the dead robber near Spring and Taft avenues. The second robber apparently ran off. Police have no description of the second robber.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Police say the shooting appears justified and will not count in the homicide tally.

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Reporter covering breaking news and crime by night. Born in Algeria but grew up in St. Louis. Previously reported for The Associated Press in Jackson, Mississippi and at the Wichita Eagle in Wichita, Kansas.

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